When you are looking for a comforting dish to either help you feel better or warm you up on a chilly day, then Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup Recipe should be up there.
This dish is even better because it consists of very healthy ingredients. Thus, not only does it taste amazing, but it is also really nutritious and beneficial for you.
No longer should you be reheating soup from a can, as this recipe is incredibly easy to recreate. While any grilled sandwich works well with tomato soup, you cannot go wrong with the classic and tangy cheese.
We have all the steps you need to follow to make this delicious grilled cheese and tomato soup recipe. Read on to learn how you can make this dish yourself!
What Is Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup?
Grilled cheese and tomato soup is a classic comfort food pairing, adored for its simple yet rich flavors. The grilled cheese sandwich typically consists of slices of bread filled with cheese, grilled until the bread is crispy and the cheese melts.
Its crispy, gooey allure is the perfect counterpoint to tomato soup, a creamy or broth-based blend of tomatoes, spices, and sometimes cream.
Together, they form a harmonious blend of textures and flavors—crunchy and smooth, savory and tangy—offering a complete, comforting meal experience.
History Of Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup
The history of grilled cheese and tomato soup is a tale of culinary evolution. The grilled cheese sandwich has roots in ancient times when cooked bread and cheese were staples.
It became an American classic during the Great Depression, offering an affordable, filling meal. With its origins in the Mediterranean, Tomato soup became popularized in the U.S. in the early 20th century, thanks in part to commercial canning.
Though not originally paired, their union likely occurred in American diners and homes, where they’ve been soulmates ever since.
Interesting Facts About The Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup
- Versatile Bread: While white bread is traditional, grilled cheese can be made with various types of bread, including sourdough, rye, and gluten-free options.
- Cheese Choices: The sky’s the limit regarding cheese selection—from classic American and cheddar to exotic Gruyère or spicy Pepper Jack.
- Soup Variations: Tomato soup can range from a chunky, rustic style to a velvety smooth bisque, adding ingredients like basil, garlic, and even a splash of cream.
- Cultural Appeal: This iconic duo is more than just popular in the U.S. Countries like France and Italy have variations, like croque-monsieur and tomato-basil soup.
- Nutritional Boost: Tomatoes in the soup are rich in antioxidants like lycopene, which has numerous health benefits.
- Popularity Spike: Grilled cheese gained fame among American soldiers during WWII when the sandwich became a military staple.
- Ultimate Comfort Food: Psychology studies suggest that the combo triggers nostalgia and emotional well-being, making it a comfort meal for many.
What Makes The Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup Special?
- Perfect Pairing: The blend of crunchy, gooey grilled cheese with smooth, tangy tomato soup creates a harmonious interplay of textures and flavors.
- Emotional Comfort: The duo evokes a sense of nostalgia and well-being, often transporting people back to simpler times.
- Versatility: Each component can be customized to individual tastes, whether adding bacon to the sandwich or spices to the soup.
- Seasonal Flexibility: Enjoyable year-round, this meal is as fitting for a chilly winter day as it is for a rainy summer afternoon.
- Accessibility: These dishes are made from widely available, budget-friendly ingredients, making them accessible to people of all ages and backgrounds.
- Nutritional Balance: Together, they offer a rounded meal with protein, fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants.
- Social Experience: Perfect for sharing, this combination often brings people together—whether it’s a family meal, a date night, or a casual gathering with friends.
|Diced Medium Onion||1|
|Peeled San Marzano Tomatoes||2 x 28 ounce cans|
|Garlic (minced)||4 cloves|
|Coconut Milk||½ cup|
|Olive Oil||2 tablespoons|
|Fresh Basil||¼ cup|
|Dried Oregano||1 teaspoon|
|Red Pepper Flakes||¼ teaspoon|
|Parmesan Cheese (optional)||To taste|
Ingredients Required In This Recipe
It may look like many ingredients are required for this recipe, but they are very simple and common ingredients.
You will be able to get all the ingredients for both the grilled cheese and the tomato soup from your local grocery store.
Grilled Cheese Ingredients
You will need the following to create this delicious grilled cheese to accompany your tomato soup:
- 8 x Thick Slices of Bread – Your bread needs to be thickly sliced, so sourdough or crusty will work well in this situation.
- ½ Stick of Salted Butter – We advised you to use salted butter, which will add flavor and help the bread to crisp.
- Cheese – You can use any cheese, but cheddar must be used to make a classic grilled cheese.
- It is important to note that these measurements will allow you to make 4 grilled sandwiches. Still, you can alter the quantities depending on the number of people you wish to serve.
- Quality Broth: Opt for organic or homemade broth for a richer flavor. It serves as the base of your soup, so quality matters.
- San Marzano Tomatoes: These Italian tomatoes are less acidic and sweeter, making them ideal for soups. If unavailable, choose another high-quality canned tomato.
- Fresh Garlic: Using fresh cloves instead of pre-minced garlic will add a more robust flavor to the soup.
- Coconut Milk Alternative: If you’re not a fan of coconut, you can replace it with heavy cream for a more traditional taste.
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Choose a good quality olive oil for the best aroma and taste.
- Natural Sweeteners: If you prefer, you can substitute the honey with maple syrup or agave nectar.
- Fresh Herbs: Fresh basil will give a livelier taste than dried. If unavailable, dried basil can be substituted, but reduce the quantity.
Can You Vary The Recipe With Other Ingredients?
- Keto: Use low-carb bread for the grilled cheese and replace the honey in the soup with a keto-friendly sweetener. Opt for heavy cream instead of coconut milk.
- Paleo: Ensure your canned tomatoes are free from added sugar or preservatives. Use almond flour bread for the grilled cheese and ghee for the grilling.
- Gluten-Free: Use gluten-free bread for the grilled cheese, and ensure your broth and canned tomatoes are gluten-free.
- Whole30: Omit the cheese and honey. Replace the bread with a Whole30-compliant version, and use coconut cream in the soup.
- Vegetarian: Use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth in the soup.
- Vegan: Replace the cheese with a vegan alternative and use vegetable broth. Opt for a plant-based sweetener like maple syrup, and use coconut or almond milk instead of dairy.
- Step 1: Sauté onions in hot olive oil for 5 minutes in a Dutch oven. Add minced garlic and cook for an additional minute.
- Step 2: Stir in coconut milk, tomatoes, and broth. Add seasonings like red pepper flakes, honey, basil, oregano, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Step 3: Blend the soup to the desired consistency and set aside.
- Step 4: Prepare grilled cheese by buttering bread and layering cheese between slices. Cook each side for 2-3 minutes in a skillet.
- Step 5: Serve soup and sandwich together, optionally garnishing soup with grated Parmesan.
Why Is Homemade Tomato Soup And Grilled Cheese Better Than Premade?
- You should try this recipe for grilled cheese and tomato soup because it is far healthier than premade options.
- Compared to handmade tomato soup, canned tomato soup is much less nutritious. Famous Campbell’s tomato soup in a can has four servings of vegetables per serving, far less than this homemade version.
- Creating your own tomato soup may make your grilled cheese sandwich healthier by using less processed components.
- For example, the amount of salt in a cup of homemade tomato soup is about 100 mg, considerably less than Campbell Soup.
- Therefore, you can know what is going into the soup by creating your own homemade soup and grilled cheese. You can then make substitutions for it to suit your diet and make it even healthier.
Why Does Tomato Soup And Grilled Cheese Go Together?
- In the United States, grilled cheese sandwiches soon gained popularity as a lunch option in the 1900s. Campbell’s Soup Company started selling tomato soup in the 1930s.
- The combination of this soup and grilled cheese sandwiches quickly gained popularity. Since then, it has become customary to combine the two foods.
- It is common to see these two dishes together. Especially as it is an excellent mix of sweet and savory. Grilled cheese can have quite a savory and salty flavor, while tomato soup has an earthy and sweet flavor profile.
- The two dishes then balance one another out to create a truly delicious meal everyone worldwide enjoys consuming.
Variations, Add-Ons, And Toppings
- Gourmet Grilled Cheese: Elevate your grilled cheese using a blend of cheeses like Gruyère, fontina, or sharp cheddar.
- Pesto Swirl: For an Italian twist, spread a layer of pesto on the bread before adding the cheese.
- Bacon Bits: Add crispy bacon bits to the soup or sandwich for an extra layer of flavor and texture.
- Avocado Slices: Add slices of avocado to your grilled cheese sandwich for a healthier twist.
- Spicy Drizzle: A drizzle of Sriracha or a dash of cayenne pepper can add heat to the soup and the sandwich.
- Herbed Croutons: Top your tomato soup with homemade croutons seasoned with herbs like rosemary or thyme.
- Caramelized Onions: Enhance the soup or sandwich with caramelized onions for sweetness.
Scaling The Recipe
- Ingredients: First, determine the number of servings you need and adjust the quantities of each ingredient proportionally. If the original recipe serves 4 and you must serve 8, double the ingredient amounts.
- Cookware: Make sure your cooking vessels, like the Dutch oven or skillet, are large enough to accommodate the increased volume, especially for the soup.
- Cooking Time: While the sautéing and simmering times may not change significantly, you may need to extend the cooking time slightly for larger quantities to ensure even cooking.
- Blending: If scaling up, you might need to blend the soup in batches to ensure a consistent texture.
- Taste Test: Always taste the soup when scaling to adjust seasonings as needed since doubling spices or salt may not result in a perfect linear increase in flavor.
- Batch Cooking: If scaling down, consider making the full soup recipe anyway and freezing the leftovers for a quick future meal.
What Is Used For Garnishing?
- Parmesan Cheese: A light sprinkle of freshly grated Parmesan over the soup offers a salty, tangy kick.
- Fresh Herbs: A sprig of fresh basil, chopped parsley, or chives adds color and aromatic delight.
- Croutons: Homemade or store-bought, herbed croutons provide a satisfying crunch against the creamy soup.
- Olive Oil Drizzle: A drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil can add a rich, fruity aroma to the soup.
- Red Pepper Flakes: A pinch of red pepper flakes can be sprinkled over the soup or sandwich for those who like spicy.
- Sour Cream Dollop: A small dollop of sour cream on the soup adds creaminess and a tangy contrast.
Can I Make Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup In A Slow Cooker Or Instant Pot?
- For the soup, combine all the ingredients except for the coconut milk and set the cooker low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours.
- Add coconut milk near the end and blend.
- The grilled cheese, however, would still require a stovetop or griddle for that crispy texture.
- Use the sauté function to cook the onions and garlic, add other ingredients, and then pressure cook for about 10 minutes.
- Quickly release the pressure, add coconut milk, and blend.
- The sauté setting can also crisp up the sandwich in a pinch.
Can I Use Store Bought Broth, Or Should I Make My Own?
- Convenience: Store-bought broth is quick and easy, especially if you’re short on time. Opt for a high-quality, organic brand with minimal additives.
- Flavor Control: Making your broth allows you to control the flavors and salt content, making your soup more personalized and healthier.
- Sodium: Store-bought versions can be high in sodium, so look for low-sodium options if this concerns you.
- Cost: Homemade is usually more cost-effective if you make large quantities, especially using vegetable scraps or leftover chicken bones.
- Texture: Homemade broths can offer a richer texture and depth of flavor, enhancing the overall experience of the soup.
Can I Use Different Types Of Meat/Fish/Pasta/Vegetables For The Soup?
- Meat: Shredded chicken or ground turkey can add protein and make the soup heartier. Cook the meat first, then add it before simmering.
- Fish: Seafoods like shrimp or white fish can also be included for a unique twist. Add the seafood a few minutes before the soup is done simmering.
- Pasta: Small pasta shapes like orzo or ditalini can be cooked directly in the soup for added texture and body.
- Vegetables: Zucchini, spinach, or bell peppers can add nutritional value and color. Just add them near the end to keep them from overcooking.
- Legumes: Chickpeas or lentils can boost protein and fiber, making it a more complete meal.
Success Tips – Tips And Tricks For Making The Soup
Everyone should have their own perfect tomato soup and grilled cheese recipe. The best thing about this recipe is that it uses simple pantry ingredients and takes under an hour to complete.
To help you create the best-grilled cheese and tomato soup combo, we have collected the best tips and advice you should keep in mind.
Consider Fire Roasted Tomatoes
- You can use any can of tomatoes to make this tomato soup. However, if you want the best flavor, we highly recommend using fired-roasted cans of tomatoes. The tomatoes are roasted over a flame and then canned.
- Cooking the tomatoes this way gives them a much sweeter flavor. In addition to this, this type of tomato will cook down a lot quicker. Therefore, your soup will require much less simmering time.
Add Multiple Cheeses
- You don’t have to stick with one type of cheese when making your grilled cheese. You can add multiple different cheeses to create a complex flavor profile.
- Why not try cheddar cheese with smoked Gouda? You will be surprised how well the smoky flavor of the Gouda elevates the grilled cheese.
Check Your Seasoning
- You must taste your tomato soup as it is being cooked, especially after adding all the seasonings.
- Suppose you like the flavor of a particular seasoning more than another. In that case, you may add more of that specific seasoning.
- However, you must taste-check your soup to ensure that a particular seasoning isn’t dominating the soup. There should be an even balance of flavors.
Shred Your Cheese
- While you could add thin cheese slices to make your grilled cheese, we advise you to shred your cheese instead.
- By shredding your cheese, you ensure it will all melt simultaneously and much quicker. In addition, this will help you create the gooiest interior possible.
Always Use Fresh Basil
- While it may be easier to get dried basil, fresh basil is much better in this recipe. It gives the soup a great flavor, which you won’t achieve with dried basil.
- With your sprinkle of Parmesan cheese on top, you could add some more chopped fresh basil to ensure that this herb has its moment to shine.
- If you don’t enjoy the flavor of coconut milk, then as we mentioned above, you could omit this and use water instead.
- However, if you still want to create a thick texture and creamy flavor, you could always add heavy cream to your soup after blending it.
- Adding cream to your tomato soup is a more traditional way to make tomato soup.
- When creating both the tomato soup and grilled cheese, you need to remember to be patient.
- The tomato soup doesn’t require much work, but you must ensure that you allow the soup for the correct amount of simmering time.
- This will allow the flavors to infuse properly, and a real depth will be created as a result.
- Furthermore, you need to have patience with your grilled cheese. Especially as you want to ensure that all the cheese is melted correctly, especially in the middle.
- This will create a much more enjoyable texture for you to eat if all the cheese has been melted properly. This is why you should also shred your cheese to allow it to melt quicker and more evenly.
This classic pair offers more than comfort. The tomato soup provides a good source of vitamins A and C, while the grilled cheese delivers protein and calcium. Enjoy this balanced treat without any guilt.
What Are The Total Calories In The Soup?
The total caloric content of tomato soup can vary widely depending on the ingredients used and their respective quantities.
Generally, depending on its components, a cup of homemade tomato soup might range from 100 to 250 calories.
Dietary Restrictions Of The Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup
- Lactose Intolerance: Traditional grilled cheese uses dairy-based cheese, and some tomato soups may also contain dairy. Use lactose-free cheese and milk to adapt the recipe.
- Gluten Sensitivity: Standard bread used for grilled cheese contains gluten. Opt for gluten-free bread as a substitute. Also, ensure that the broth used in the soup is gluten-free.
- Vegan: Traditional recipes use animal-based ingredients like chicken broth and dairy cheese. Use plant-based cheese and vegetable broth to make it vegan-friendly.
- Nut Allergies: Coconut milk in the soup may be an issue for those with nut allergies. Substitute with a nut-free milk like oat or hemp.
- Low-Carb/Keto: The soup’s bread and possibly sugar (in some recipes) might be high in carbs. Use low-carb bread and a sugar substitute for a keto-friendly version.
- Paleo: Bread and dairy are not paleo-friendly. Substitute with grain-free bread and use ghee or a non-dairy alternative like almond or cashew cheese.
- Halal/Kosher: Ensure the broth and cheese are certified according to your religious dietary laws.
Health Benefits Of The Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup
- Tomatoes: Rich in lycopene, a powerful antioxidant, tomatoes are also a good source of vitamins A, C, and K.
- Onions & Garlic: These ingredients contain antioxidants and are known for their anti-inflammatory properties.
- Whole Grains: Using whole-grain bread for your grilled cheese can provide fiber and essential nutrients like B vitamins.
- Calcium: Cheese is a good source of calcium and protein, essential for bone health.
- Healthy Fats: Using olive oil and coconut milk adds monounsaturated and medium-chain saturated fats, which can be heart-healthy when consumed in moderation.
- Herbs: Basil and oregano add flavor, additional antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory benefits.
- Fiber: Adding vegetables or legumes to the soup can increase its fiber content, aiding digestion.
How Can I Make Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup Lower In Sodium?
- Broth: Opt for a low-sodium or sodium-free broth as the base of your tomato soup. You can also make homemade broth to control the salt content.
- Cheese: Choose cheeses naturally lower in sodium, like Swiss or mozzarella, for your grilled cheese.
- Bread: Look for low-sodium bread options, or even consider making your own to control the salt content better.
- Seasoning: Instead of relying solely on salt, use herbs like basil, oregano, and thyme to flavor the soup. Fresh tomatoes can also add flavor without added sodium.
- Taste Test: Always taste your soup before adding any extra salt. Often, the natural flavors and seasonings provide enough taste without the need for additional salt.
How Can I Make Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup Lower In Sugar?
- Tomatoes: Use fresh tomatoes or canned tomatoes with no added sugar. Always check labels when buying canned goods.
- Broth: Choose a broth with no added sugar, or make your own at home.
- Bread: Opt for whole-grain bread that is free from added sugars. Read labels carefully.
- Seasoning: Skip adding honey or any other sweeteners to the soup. Enhance flavor with herbs and spices instead.
- Coconut Milk: Choose unsweetened coconut milk, as some brands add sugar.
- Taste Test: Always taste your soup before serving. The natural sweetness of tomatoes and onions often provides enough flavor, eliminating the need for additional sugar.
How To Serve The Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup At Its Best?
- Temperature: Serve the soup piping hot; reheating before serving ensures maximum flavor. The grilled cheese should be warm and crispy, not soggy.
- Pairing: Cut the grilled cheese into manageable slices or triangles and place them artfully next to or partially submerged in the soup bowl for visual appeal.
- Garnish: A sprinkle of fresh basil or grated Parmesan on the soup can elevate its appearance and taste.
- Serving Ware: Use warm bowls for the soup and a separate plate or board for the grilled cheese, allowing guests to enjoy each component individually or together.
- Accompaniments: Offer some simple sides like pickles or a green salad to balance the richness of the soup and sandwich.
Perfect Side Dishes To Complement Grilled Cheese And Tomato Soup
- Green Salad: A simple leafy green salad with a light vinaigrette can offer a refreshing counterpoint to the richness of the grilled cheese and soup.
- Pickles: The tanginess of pickles can cut through the richness of the cheese and add a different texture.
- Fruit Slices: Fresh apple or pear slices can provide a crisp and sweet contrast.
- Sweet Potato Fries: These can add a touch of sweetness and are a healthier alternative to regular fries.
- Steamed Vegetables: Asparagus, broccoli, or cauliflower can be lightly seasoned and served as a nutritious side.
- Garlic Bread: For those who want an even heartier meal, garlic bread can complement the flavors in the soup.
- Coleslaw: A lightly dressed coleslaw can provide both crunch and tang, enhancing the overall meal.
How Long Can We Store The Soup?
The longevity of your tomato soup depends on how you store it. In the refrigerator, a well-sealed tomato soup container can last up to 3 to 4 days. If you plan on keeping it longer, consider freezing the soup.
In a freezer-safe container, it can last up to 2 to 3 months. Leave some space at the top of the container for expansion during freezing.
To enjoy, defrost in the refrigerator overnight and reheat on the stove. Always check for signs of spoilage like off-odors or mold before consuming.
Can I Make The Soup In Advance?
Making tomato soup in advance is possible and a great time-saver. Prepare the soup as usual and allow it to cool completely before transferring it to an airtight container.
Store it in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days or in the freezer for 2 to 3 months.
When you’re ready to serve, reheat the soup on the stovetop, adjusting the seasoning if needed. This makes it convenient for meal planning and ensures a delicious option.
What Can We Do With Leftovers?
- Tomato Soup Risotto: Use the leftover tomato soup as the liquid base for a risotto, adding extra richness and flavor.
- Stuffed Peppers: Fill bell peppers with rice and chopped-up grilled cheese, then bake until soft.
- Pasta Sauce: Reduce the leftover tomato soup to a thicker consistency and use it as a pasta sauce. Add some veggies for extra nutrition.
- Soup Dumplings: Thicken the soup with a bit of cornstarch and use it as a filling for homemade dumplings.
- Grilled Cheese Croutons: Cut the leftover grilled cheese into cubes and toast them in the oven. Use these as croutons for salads or to top another soup.
- Frittata: Crumble the grilled cheese and mix it into a frittata batter and some veggies for a quick and satisfying meal.
- Quesadilla: Open the grilled cheese, add extra fillings like cooked chicken or vegetables, and re-grill as a quesadilla.
Special Tools/Equipment Needed
Tomato soup and grilled cheese is a straightforward recipe to follow. In contrast, it uses essential ingredients but requires no technical or complex tools.
Before you begin making anything, once you have collected your ingredients, you must ensure that you have the following tools to help you complete this recipe.
You will need to collect the following tools outlined below:
- Large Dutch Oven
- Wooden Spoon
- Large Skillet
- Immersion Blender
Grilled cheese and tomato soup is a well-known and popular combination for lunch or dinner. It consists of basic ingredients to create a complex and flavorful meal.
Anyone can follow the recipe outlined above to create this mouthing dish. In addition, you can easily customize this recipe to suit your dietary requirements or taste.
You can even make large batches to freeze to ensure you always have some tomato soup.
We hope you have found this article helpful. You can impress your friends and family by following all the steps and tips we have spoken about.
When you see them, serve them your homemade grilled cheese and bowl of tomato soup.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Use Any Bread For The Grilled Cheese?
While you can use any bread you prefer, denser breads like sourdough or whole grain often hold up better under the weight of the cheese and give a satisfying crunch when grilled.
How Can I Make The Tomato Soup Thicker?
To thicken the soup, you can reduce it by simmering more or adding a cornstarch slurry (a mixture of cornstarch and cold water) while stirring continuously until you achieve the desired consistency.
Is It Okay To Use Canned Tomatoes For The Soup?
Canned tomatoes are a convenient and effective option. San Marzano tomatoes are especially popular for their rich flavor, but any high-quality canned tomato will work.
Can I Add Meat To The Tomato Soup?
You can add meat such as cooked chicken, turkey, or even sausage to the soup for extra protein and flavor. Add the cooked meat during the simmering process to allow flavors to meld.
What’s The Best Way To Reheat The Grilled Cheese?
For best results, reheat the grilled cheese in a skillet over medium heat to restore its crispiness. Please avoid using the microwave, as it can make the bread soggy.
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